• Kirsty Partridge

12 Must Have Watercolor Supplies

I’m going to go through some supplies that make my watercolor paintings look a lot more interesting and I don’t mean the basics! The 3 basics you need for watercolor paintings are paint, paper and brushes. This blog post is dedicated to some extra additions that you might not have thought of!


I will put all links to the materials in this post at the bottom of the page if you want to go and check any out.

1. Masking Fluid

You can get this in either a pen for the little details or a bottle which is easy to apply over larger areas. This stuff is great at preserving highlights as when it dries it forms a latex which prevents your watercolors from covering that section of the paper. So, feel free to paint over it and not have to worry about avoiding tiny details. Simply rub it off afterwards with a finger (or I prefer a tea towel) and your highlights will be still dazzling white.


2. Binder Clips

I’ve been using these for over six months now and they are awesome with sketchbooks. Use the clips to hold the paper you are painting to the other pages in your sketchbook and this prevents any of that annoying paper warping and buckling from happening. They’re even useful when you’re painting outside and want to stop the wind from blowing your pages over.


3. Colored Pencils

These are great for adding definition and detail to your painting. Simply, use them on top of your watercolor paintings for the final touches. These are great as the pencils are so much easier to control than the brush.



4. Gouache/Gel Pen

I use these two supplies for the same purpose – to create amazing highlights! They are both very opaque compared to watercolors so whenever you need to add in highlights these two supplies show up distinctly and are everything you need.



5. Washi Tape

This is great for two reasons – one, it prevents warping if you tape your paper to the desk, and two, it creates a beautiful border around your finished watercolor that looks very professional (I like to think so anyway).


6. Inks

I like to use metallic inks with my watercolors, if only to make them look more unique. The two mediums work really well together, especially when using the wet-on-wet technique as the ink can bleed into the watercolor to give awesome results. My favorite is a pink-gold ink.


7. White Wax Pencil

This helps to create a ‘resist’. Apply it to your paper and the watercolor won’t be able to stay on top of this as it’s a waxy medium. Just another way of creating and preserving those all-important highlights!




8. Salt

I talk about salt a lot (sorry!) but I use it a lot because it creates such cool and interesting effects. You can use any type of salt and just sprinkle it over your finished (but still wet) watercolor wash. It works especially well with snowy and icy effects.



9. Toothbrush/Flat Brush

I use these tools with the white gouache to create a really pretty star effect. Just spray the brush onto any area you want to create a beautifully natural starry effect and voila!




10. Water Dropper

If you have too much water on your painting this tool simply hoovers it all up – just squeeze the top part.






11. Cling Film

Another household item that can create really cool effects, which I use for ice and stems/leaves. Place the cling film onto wet watercolors and mold it into any shape you want, then leave it to dry. Once you’ve peeled it away, you’re left with fantastic patterns that can make your painting that much more eye-catching.


12. Tissue

Tissue is commonly used to blot paintbrushes and also clean them. All good things, however, I like to create more cool effects using tissue. For example, I use tissue to lift up watercolors and reveal highlights that can become clouds or anything else your imagination can think of.


For more tips on how to use these supplies effectively, why don't you try out my online watercolor courses?


Check out the video below.


Materials:

Masking fluid pen: https://geni.us/maskingfluidpen

Masking fluid bottle: https://geni.us/maskingfluid

Binder Clip: http://geni.us/binderclip

Prismacolor Coloured Pencils: https://geni.us/Prismacolor150Set

Faber Castell Polychromos coloured pencils: https://geni.us/Polychromos120Set

Windsor and newton gouache: http://geni.us/DesignerWhiteGouache

Gel pen: https://geni.us/SakuraWhitePen

Washi Tape: https://geni.us/washitapeset

Gold ink: https://geni.us/goldink

Sketchbook: http://geni.us/sketchbook

Silver Brush Paintbrushes: http://geni.us/Brushset

Cotman watercolours: http://geni.us/StarterWatercolorSet

Arches Cold pressed paper: https://geni.us/Archescoldpressed

Disclaimer; some links are Amazon affiliated.

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